A$AP Rocky has his new LP, At.Long.Last.A$AP, out in a couple of weeks on June 2nd. Tonight, Lil B premiered what is the best track released so far from the LP, “LSD”, along with a psychotropic visual. As the title might indicate, the track has a dreamlike, hallucinatory feel about it. While we believed A$AP’s new album would be great, this has us raising our expectations. Listen and watch below.
Solo albums can be a funny thing. Often times a lead singer who strikes out on his or her own can be desperate to fashion a new identity and reclaim their voice as an artist. This new identity can feel so far removed from their old band, maybe a hypothetical band that you loved dearly, that you question whether you can support this singer’s new quest for independence or whether you need to bury your head in a stack of old LPs and remember the good times. Hamilton Leithauser, the former frontman of a band that I happen to be enamored with, stands in direct opposition to this artistic pitfall: his new album doesn’t just showcase the raspy, smoke-filled croon I’ve come to love, it shows the development of an artist that I’ll happily continue to follow.
Leithauser stopped by LUNA music back in September during the Indianapolis leg of his tour with Spoon to perform some stripped down versions of songs from his new album, Black Hours, for our Laundromatinee.com project. Jumping between the seam-bursting energy of “Alexandra” and the sweetly melancholy “11 O’clock Friday Night,” Leithauser played to a tightly packed, intimate group at the shop as if in front of an audience at a sold out club. After the final song the crowd pushed forward to talk with Leithauser, who graciously shook hands with each member of the crowd who waited for him. This kind of enthusiasm and kindness bodes well for the new identity Leithauser is forming, and the size of the crowd makes me think he’ll have quite a sizable following throughout this new stage in his career.
Filmed by: Doug Fellegy / Erin Browne / Katherine Martin
Edited by: Doug Fellegy
Recorded and Mixed by: Jeff DuPont
We recently had the pleasure of hanging out with cool kids of Sales a month back during a show here in Indianapolis. Not only were they great live, they couldn’t have been any nicer of people. They even filled us in that they were working on their debut LP that could possibly see the light of day this year, so be on the lookout for that.
In the meantime, they continue to tour relentlessly in support of their excellent self-titled EP (grab that here) from last year and have announced a ton of dates across Europe. With those dates, they have also shared a three-part live video series filmed in different locations around St. Petersburg, FL and our hometown, Orlando, FL and were directed by Josef Lorenzo. In it, they perform “Vow”, “Chinese New Year”, and hooky “Renee”. Watch all three below.
New York City duo Zoe Silverman & Adam Pallin, known under the name ASTR, have returned with a high-energy new song “Activate Me”, their first new music in over a year since their pleasing Varsity EP. The track was produced by legendary producer Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins who has worked with anyone and everyone that has mattered in pop music over the last two decades. Turn up the volume on this one, as it is meant to be played as loud as possible, whether it is in a club or your car.
Trio Wet’s gorgeous latest song, “Deadwater”, about “about letting go of a relationship that’s become stagnant or destructive” has received an equally beautiful visual to go along with it. Directed by George Belfield, the video follows singer Kelly Zutrau through scenic terrain in upstate New York. The song will appear on their debut LP, Don’t You, slated to drop in the fall via Columbia Records. Watch below.
Utilizing cold, seductive production, Chicago duo IDYLL, comprised of Angelina Lucero and Jojo Yang, have all of the necessary elements to rise above simple buzz status. Recently, they signed to Friends of Friends and will be releasing their debut EP, One, on June 16th. Coinciding with the announcement, they have unveiled a digitally animated video for the excellent “Bad Boi” by Zero Ghul. According to Ghul, the clip visualizes and “explores the complex themes of the human grotesque through a science fiction neo-noir lens.” Watch below.
On the cover of The Apache Relay’s 2014 eponymous album, a man sits poolside, calmly strumming an acoustic guitar while another man appears mid-plunge about ten feet from the pool’s undisturbed surface. It’s a wonderful contradiction of active and passive and arguably one of the year’s best album covers. The album itself more or less embodies that image; lyrics of longing brood alone in the background while up-tempo, pop-minded folk music captures your attention as it falls feet first into a pool from an unsafe height. The Apache Relay’s high-energy folk-rock has done them well over the past six years, taking them from a college dorm room to a bill with Mumford and Sons, but in this session at Indianapolis’ Hi-Fi, we get to spend a little more time looking at the man sitting in background with his acoustic guitar.
Though the band has three albums in its catalog, all three songs in this session come from the aforementioned self-titled release. The album’s opener “Katie Queen of Tennessee” loses the strings and 1950’s drumbeat found on the recording but gains an acoustic guitar lead as well as a tenderness born of the speaker’s pleas for love while fleeing from the law. (Did I mention these guys were from Nashville? I feel like there are few themes that evoke the Nashville spirit more than looking for love amidst a run in with the cops.) Similarly, “Ruby” and “Don’t Leave Me,” bereft of their percussion and production, become far more earnest and melancholic as the speaker laments the complicated love that appears to be slipping from his fingers. Equally rewarding is the revelation that these guys can sing and harmonize very well.
It’s not always interesting when a band switches from a full, electric set to an acoustic one, but The Apache Relay finds a way to keep their songs fresh in the differing contexts. Their versatility will undoubtedly serve them well as they continue to grow as a group. Be sure to keep an eye on them for future recordings.
Filmed and edited by Doug Fellegy and Nicole Conflenti
Recorded and Mixed by Jeff DuPont
Written by Gerard Pannekoek